[00:00:00] This topic is a fact there's law consider when they're hiring lateral attorneys. And this is a good thing. I don't know. So a lot of times people will go do some, they'll say the wrong things. I'll also show up for working to do the wrong things because they don't understand the largest law firms are looking for.
[00:00:22] So this is actually a very very webinar. Wait if your main goal is to work in a major firm. So let me get started here. Let me one second. Okay. One of the things that most people think to, they want to work law firms and they put the search.
[00:00:41]They really are hoping that things will open up for them. Very, they will a job in fairly short order. And but Tim's what happened. So the speed of what w the way you can get a position from is really be the control of because it's very competitive, especially firms. [00:01:00] And and it happens.
[00:01:01] There's what I call it, a weight. That's going to be taken into consideration when. And you, and then we'll basically it'd be due by the economy and the practice areas and so forth. And so what I'm going to talk about today is law firms evaluating large law firms are valuable candidates that in there, one of the ways this is what's called the concept pocket.
[00:01:25]typically has how long it's going to take you to get a position with a more firms. So if each new fi certain number tents with the law firm valuate and against you in a bucket and most of south, again, immediately follow the bottom as too many backgrounds. And ultimately what happens is a law firm chooses the candidate that has the least weight ever get a boy I of them to talk to you about today instead of the, the thing.
[00:01:54] Kind of show up as negative way, then your resume, everybody's going to have negative way, but the P [00:02:00] meaning things that aren't typically going to the top and the thing who is that offer from all businesses are out to maximize their self-interest. What that means is if they really want to hire people that's your self interest and float to the top are the people typically that are maximizing their self-interest and and can they expect the most amount of negative weight will typically determine, if you rise to the top of the bucket or not.
[00:02:28] One of the things that happens is nice to especially attorneys get a real false sense of liability because they were able to summer associate positions. It's important when you're applying to a. You're applying as an attorney or firm it's much different than summer. And a lot of times because people worked as summer associates and got a job in a very good firm that they were summer associates that after they believe that there, and you should always be careful in a fall purity.
[00:03:00] [00:03:00] Your chances. At our position based on your success in getting hired in the past as an associate, it's often for many attorneys, much more difficult to get a lateral position in the summer associate position. Because when you're looking for a position as a law student, what you're really doing is you're typically competing with maybe 30,000 other law students that are going into their second year for maybe wonder, four or 5,000 summer associate jobs in the best law firms.
[00:03:24] And the only thing a law firm has to evaluate you at that time is the quality of the law school. You went to your grades. And even, I would say to some extent, a lesser ability, a lesser factor, but it is important as your personality and how well you interview. And you don't yet have a practice area there's things that you haven't, shown whether or not you have stability you, your attitude problem, and so forth.
[00:03:47] And, you really, there's nothing for them negative for them to really evaluate you with at that point. And later on, you will accumulate negative points, but at the point, this particular point, we typically don't have anything law firm is against you. So the top [00:04:00] tenor in law school, you're off to a great start.
[00:04:02]If you have good grades interviewed your grades and and so typically that's the people that associate job firms, and then if you're at a top 10, it's typically not as difficult to get a summer job, only a few thousand students competing for these positions.
[00:04:17]And it's far less than the number of positions that the law firms have. Your career what you need to understand that if you went to a top law school there's more jobs for attorneys with good backgrounds than there are applicants, clay from the best law schools. And, one of the top law schools, which would be, your Harvards and your, or you may have a sense of you're extremely marketable.
[00:04:36] And because of their interest in you early in your career, when you post yet and happens, it's when you've been out of law school, we actually not be as marketable. And, from a top law, a good grade, or, even from, is automatically the top of the bucket. You haven't yet accumulated and you're getting towards the top and that you may not [00:05:00] this category at the moment.
[00:05:01]You're a lateral. Far, but I'm trying to show you, why it's much easier to get a job when you're coming a summer associate, or you got a job as a summer associate, then it can be later on. Just because there's fear of qualified applicants from the top law schools. But when you get out in the real world and you start up out of a position law firms will start having.
[00:05:20] All sorts of reasons to disqualify you. And it's going to become much harder to rise to the top of the bucket. And when you were looking for a job as a summer associate, all you may have needed to do is really interview quite well and have good grades and be at a top law school. Later on it becomes a much more difficult as a summer associate there's typically hundreds of jobs in major cities, but as a lateral attorney you may only be competing for a few of those chops.
[00:05:45]The first thing is to get hired as a lateral attorney. You really need to rise to the top of the bucket and not follow the bottom of the bucket. And these are some of the reasons that. Will disqualify you from getting a job as a lateral attorney. It may help you also get a position and they're what I call [00:06:00] negative weight and buoyancy factors that can help you rise or fall to the bottom.
[00:06:04] And the reasons, there's literally the 30 that I'm going to list today. There's more than that, but these are the 30, most common that I come across in my job. And Hypothetically, that there's, you're an applicant, every applicant starts with a hundred points and and these are some of the factors right here.
[00:06:17] Now, the first thing is, most of the people that are applying for jobs, if a law firm has a job, and they're looking for someone with, one to five years of experience most of the people are going to be applying that actually have more than five years of experience. So if you can believe it.
[00:06:31] And the reason for that is because a majority of attorneys have more than five years of experience. There's very few attorneys that have one to five years of experience. So most lateral positions in law firms, unless you have business are going to require you to have one to five years of experience.
[00:06:46] That's when you're most marketable. And that's just the way we, it goes, once you get beyond five years of experience, your your billing rate increases your compensation increases. You're competing with work for part, with partners for work. You're you should be on a partnership track [00:07:00] wherever you're at.
[00:07:00]And and partners would prefer to do most of the work. And it, these days, it's even more than five years. Sometimes it's six years, but one to six, five or six years is typically the sweet spot. And once you're beyond that, it becomes very difficult. Comparatively to get a job.
[00:07:14]You're much less marketable at that point in most most markets not always, but almost all the time. And, I'd estimate that probably 95% of the positions out there are for junior attorneys with one to five years of experience. That's a big number. Youth is just a major benefit when it comes to getting jobs with large law firms.
[00:07:33] They want people that are young and hungry and they want people that want to get ahead that, don't think they know everything and so forth, and they really want Younger people. It's just how it works. And except for some specialist attorney positions, very few law firms have a need for attorneys with 10 years of experience in no business.
[00:07:50] It's just how the business works and that's kinda what it is. And and not withstanding, I place a lot of attorneys each month, I would say at least one per week that [00:08:00] have between five and 30 plus years of experience. And in large law firms, it's not impossible to get hired with that amount of experience, but most of the people that do get hired have very specialist or are specialists in something, whether it's a special type of corporate law or, a type of patent law or their employee benefits, something like that.
[00:08:17]It's very difficult if you're like litigator, for example, and another practice areas. There's just far fewer firms that have worked for senior attorneys with no business and most large law firms. Don't. Most of the work is Virginia attorneys. Th the first lesson here is that, you're going to be most marketable.
[00:08:32] You're going to typically, if you want a lateral into a large law firm, your best time to do it is between if you don't have business, when you have a one to five years of experience, you're going to have a very difficult time doing it. When you get beyond that. And and so that's, typically once you're beyond five or six years of experience you, that kind of starts being weighted against you with large law firms.
[00:08:53] The other thing that I think because very significant I bring this up to attorneys all the time and and more and more people are [00:09:00] listening to me, but it's very important is you're much more likely to rise to the top of the bucket. If you're looking for a position in a small city as opposed to a large city.
[00:09:08]The problem with large cities is Businesses like operating in large cities like New York and places like that because they have a huge talent pool. Any type of attorney that a law firm wants in New York city, they can attract quickly. It's just, it's not difficult. Whereas in smaller cities there's far fewer applicants and it's much more difficult for law firms to attract the type of people they want in smaller markets.
[00:09:31] And so in large cities, they can be ridiculously choosing, for example, In New York city, it's almost impossible if you're a general commercial litigator to get a position many times in a major firm, if you have more than five or six years of experience, it's just it's not unheard of, but it's extremely difficult.
[00:09:46] Whereas in smaller markets that happens all the time. The same thing goes with unemployed attorneys and a market like New York city. It's very difficult for unemployed attorneys to get positions in large law firms, whereas in smaller markets, it happens all the time. And the reason is [00:10:00] because lot firms in large cities will look for all sorts of reasons.
[00:10:03]And can judge you more harshly because they have many more people applying for the same jobs. It's something that everyone needs to remember. I wish they did because there's so many people that are so attached to certain markets and never get positions because of that. There's a virtually limitless number of attorneys, a limitless number of attorneys for.
[00:10:20]Law firms in most big cities to choose from. And that makes it very difficult for people to get jobs in those markets. So if you don't have the best qualifications, you're typically, and you want to work in a large. Off from you're typically better off avoiding large markets. I mentioned that something that, you it's just it's not good.
[00:10:39] And if you lose your job, it's also going to be very hard. You need to have much better qualifications typically to work in a major firm in a major market. Need to work and from in a smaller market and lots of big firms have offices in other markets and cities, and it's much easier to get a job with them if you're not, if you're trying to lateral there with with, without if [00:11:00] you're trying to lateral there as opposed to a, on the larger markets.
[00:11:03] And so it's much easier to rise to the top of the bucket in a smaller market. It's very common by the way, for attorneys to start their careers in the main and major, very competitive markets and then move to smaller ones because it'll be easier for them to make partner. It'll be easier for them to get clients and so forth.
[00:11:17]But the only drawback of a smaller market is there typically are fewer opportunities. So if you lose your job in a market, a smaller market, you're going to have a difficult time getting a new job. And and also if you're in a niche practice area you may only a job may only come up once every few years whereas in larger markets there may be opportunities all the time.
[00:11:38] So that's something to think about. And typically large markets are, you're always going to have access to jobs, so there's always stuff there. But the only thing I don't like about the large markets and large cities is if, you do want to get a position there it's your qualifications are typically gonna need to be better.
[00:11:52]And and there, there are more opportunities. It's just it's harder to get jobs at the same, the requirements in terms of [00:12:00] what they're looking for in the attorneys are typically going to be much more demanding than they are in smaller markets. The other thing that I think, and this is something that, that a lot of people don't agree with is that.
[00:12:09]You're much more likely to get a position. If you understand, or the recruiter you're working with understands your background and maybe approaching firms that don't necessarily have formal openings as opposed to firms with openings. So most lateral candidates believe that you should only apply to firms have openings, which really doesn't make any sense.
[00:12:28]And every city in, in New York city, there's probably 50 plus boutiques that do corporate work. And typically don't have openings, but are always looking for different types of corporate attorneys. The same thing goes with litigation firms. There's there's certain firms that are always looking for litigators, there's certain firms.
[00:12:43] And so they don't necessarily put out that they have a job. They're always looking for the same places. So people make the mistake of believing that they should only apply to. Firms that have openings and they apply to only big firms with open hands. And don't understand that that once you apply to the firms [00:13:00] that have openings, you're putting yourself into competition with everyone else.
[00:13:03] That's applying for those exact same jobs. And you know what we do here, and I'm not just as not an advertisement. But we're able to locate firms with an untapped need many times for someone like that. And over 80% of the placements that my team and I have made the share, which is quite a few, I think it's over 200 at this point.
[00:13:20]Have been at firms don't have openings, so that should give you a major insight into where the jobs are and how much easier it is to float to the top when you're not competing with tons of other people. You have to understand matchmaking, you have to understand law firms.
[00:13:34] It's one reason we only do law firm placements and I've been doing this for 20 years. I'm an expert in it. But I'm learning new stuff every day. So I use expert loosely and but if you know where the work is and you can be you can find that work then, that's a really good way to get a position if you're competing.
[00:13:49] If you're looking for positions with firms that don't necessarily have formal openings that everyone else is sending their candidates to, and you're sending yourself too. And, the thing to remember is a law firm [00:14:00] is a business. So if the law firm has the work and they can make money by giving you the work they will hire you.
[00:14:05] And if you find firms with done advertised positions and you're the only attorney they're competing for the same job you're going to be able to get a job much more easily. And I honestly make most of my placements over 80% of them by finding law firms on advertised needs and and getting people jobs there because I'm putting them into competition at firms where we're no one else is competing.
[00:14:27] If you're in a major market, you're probably quite aware that every time a certain law firm has an opening you may get a call from five or six recruiters about that opening. And it just means that you're going to be competing with 50 plus people for that same job to stand out. You typically want to be the only applicant for a job.
[00:14:44] So recruiters or matchmakers you should be a matchmaker for your marketing. Do you think have the work and and this will help you rise to the top because why would you want to, put yourself in a position where you're being measured against, 25 or 30 other people or 50 or a hundred other people, as opposed to being the only [00:15:00] person considered at a firm that has a lot of work.
[00:15:01] The other thing that's important that is if you want to get a job with the firm there's certain ways and certain things you can do to get a job that are better than others. One of the things that I think is helpful is if you have a preexisting relationship with a partner that has business in the firm and you're looking for kind of an associate or a partner role there Many people believe that they should be using their contacts and friends inside of law firms to get positions typically that doesn't help you.
[00:15:25]It can, but typically it doesn't. Many times when you use a friend you don't know how your the law firm views your friend they could be getting ready to fire them. Your contact may say positive and negative things about you to cover themselves. And friends are often competitive with one another.
[00:15:40]Many times I've seen, when someone says they gave their resume to their friend 25 to 30% of the time, their friend doesn't even give the rest of may to the firms. So that's, one thing, but if you do use a partner, then a partner can actually be very helpful because if the partner has business in the law firms likely to listen to them want to please them.
[00:15:59] And and [00:16:00] we'll often hire someone by a fall for partner. Literally a good way to if that partner does have some power in the equation that can really get your resume rocketed to the top of the pile and other people ignored and all sorts of great things can happen.
[00:16:14]Partners with business can really give you a leg up in your search. And it's really something that you should look into. If you do know people in big law firms that you have some sort of preexisting relationship with, cause they can help you. I definitely helps. I have partners that that I rely on to get, certain candidates of mine hired above other recruiters, candidates.
[00:16:33]It's this is a business of relationships and it can be very helpful. So if partners inside of a law firm, they're typically very good to rely on and that can help you rise to the top. Not always, but they CA the other thing is if th the, you get hired as a lateral attorney is you're always going to be much better off trying to get a position with a smaller, lower pain law firm than with a brand name law firm.
[00:16:53]When I was in school everyone was applying to the same large firms and and it made it more difficult. And most [00:17:00] attorneys for whatever reason mainly the pay and the prestige, prefer major law firms over smaller ones. But when you're looking for a position that many law firms where you could, ease it more easily, get a position receive far fewer applicants.
[00:17:12]You're always many times going to have an easier time getting a position with a smaller firm than a maid, then a larger pharmacist the way it is. What I would recommend for everyone is just that to understand that if you're looking for a job, then, maybe try looking also at smaller law firms, as well as larger law firms and and then that can be helpful in many times, people have much better careers in smaller law firms.
[00:17:33]I bring this up almost every week, but everyone that I know, Jordy people that I know that went to work in smaller law firms earlier in their career are still practicing law and seem fairly happy doing it. And they're still practicing the law firms, everyone that I know that went to large law firms for the most part, the majority of them are no longer practicing law.
[00:17:53] And several of them have died or had other problems that I think were brought on by sticking with something that maybe didn't make [00:18:00] them happy. So it's just important to realize that you're much better off many times, working in a firmware here, you're much more comfortable than where you're our current happy.
[00:18:09]The other thing that's important. And then makes it much easier to get a position is if you're in a practice area that's very busy and practice here is go through cycles. So at various points in time, a certain practice areas are always going to be very busy. And some will be very slow.
[00:18:24]Real estate is often active or has been active in the past when interest rates are low and slow and straights are high. When the economy is active, corporate is just completely on fire. Everybody wants to do corporate. And so corporate is very active litigation is very active. When the economy is slow and not as active when it's, when it is active.
[00:18:43]But it goes in cycles and bankruptcy is often been active when major industries are experiencing various issues. And just to give you some insight into how corporate can be like when corporate is busy people that never, you could never imagine getting hired by large law firms suddenly get [00:19:00] hired.
[00:19:00]They could be I've seen the law firms just go to great lengths to hire people. I've seen people get hired from third tier law schools by AmLaw 20 firms coming out of three person law firms. It's It gets very active. And so if you're in an active practice here, there's just very few of you, so you'll rise to the top and then incorporate corporate slow.
[00:19:19]What happens is the market tends to have just an incredible number of applicants for each position. Because attorneys are losing their jobs when the economy slows down. And it's just, it just depends on the, the status of the market. So if there's not enough openings and positions then the higher end standards of law firms will go down and and that's just kinda how it works.
[00:19:39] And so in that will help you rise to the top. So you just have to understand that, the success of your search will. Pattern on how busy or slow your practice here is. Then the other thing is depending on the economy the practice here, you with our, your, and we'll either help you rise to the top of the Bach and bucket or pump.
[00:19:53]The it's much easier many times looking for a position in a good economy than it is a bad economy. And the [00:20:00] economy just has a lot of a lot to do with your search. And and it it it's just, something to understand. Looking at a bad economy we'll make it very may have very different results.
[00:20:09]And so it's just something to understand. The other thing is that really perhaps attorneys as the status of the w your practice setting that you're coming from. Most law firms hire people only out of law firms. And law firms said are in the business of selling their services, the public, and they have to be accountable.
[00:20:25]They have they have to watch the billable hours, but the attorneys have to. Bill know how to bill and when to bill and when not to bill and so forth. And if you're coming out of a in-house position the government academia. And you're not necessarily to think the same way that law firms think.
[00:20:39] And so law firms are more like people are more likely to get hired much more likely if they're coming directly from a law firm. In fact it's almost impossible in many large markets to get hired. And, with the exception of maybe a clerkship to get hired by a large law firm, especially coming from in-house or any other practice setting they just won't do it.
[00:20:56]Law firms want people that can step into them immediately do [00:21:00] the same sort of work. And then in get to work there and, certainly there's a lot of very. Good in-house jobs. There's places you can go to work in house where you can get very good experience.
[00:21:10]But the problem is everyone knows who the best law firms are and in-house legal departments will vary depending on who the general counsel is, depending on who the CEO is, and they just can't keep up with it. So you really need to become in most cases from a law firm and not another practice setting.
[00:21:27] And that's just going to be much more helpful for it to rise to the top of the bucket. And the other thing that I that I believe is very important and and I wish people would really pay a lot of attention to is that you're typically much more likely to get a position.
[00:21:42]You're one of the first applicants to a job as opposed to one of the latter ones. And what happens with our candidates typically is one of the reasons when you work with recruiters, or when you start your job search, that it always has you should take at least a couple months to get a position it's because.
[00:21:59] When your [00:22:00] recruiter starts working with you, they'll typically start sending you to jobs that are have been opened for a while. And if a job has been open for awhile, what that means is the law firm has already started interviewing people and probably won't really look at your application very closely.
[00:22:14] So it's only after that the application has been sent and is in a response to a new position that the law firm will start considering applications, because what happens is, if a law firm has an opening it will typically interview people that apply in the first week or first few days.
[00:22:30] And then the application is just keep coming. But the law firm is most interested in the most recent applications because once it starts interviewing it doesn't want to continually bring lots of people there. Law firms are. I'm much more likely to speak with the first people who apply.
[00:22:44]And they want to bring people in typically very quickly. And most of the time you're gonna S you're going to have success after it, when you're already applying to very quickly to open because law firms also have a sense of investment in the first people to interview.
[00:22:56] And so they're more inclined to hire The first people to interview with and [00:23:00] others who come along later and early applicants and so forth, also tend to bond with our interviewers. There's an investment that the law firm has a law firm. Doesn't want to waste a lot of time interviewing because it's losing money and while it's doing that law firms typically will hire the first people that come along and and it's it, you know what I've noticed too, with the people that get hired that I work with, it's typically not after the first round of submissions.
[00:23:24] It's often after, several that the person gets hired because they have to apply to. Several places, several times, or, several new places that have new openings before everything kind of starts calling in their way. And it's just kinda how the process works. So once you start your search, you should never get discouraged.
[00:23:41]If you're not getting positions right away, you're usually going to get interviews when you apply to jobs right after they become open. So we always, send people jobs the same day, they're open and then I try to get people to, to approve them right away. There's a definite advantage in speed and you should be working as quickly as you can as well when you, if you're applying [00:24:00] for a job center on extremely important.
[00:24:02]And I really don't know how to. How more to emphasize it, but you need, if you're doing a job search on your own and you're lateral to firms, you need to apply to openings. The second day become open. If you're applying to jobs and you're just starting and you're not getting any momentum it's probably because the firms don't have any opening chat are, you're not applying to new openings and you may need to do that a couple of times before you can get a job.
[00:24:26] The other thing is you're far more likely to rise to the sense of the type of the bucket. If you don't have a sense of entitlement than if you do have a sense of entitlement. One of the things that that I've seen is especially with young attorneys and sometimes even with older attorneys, a lot of times, attorneys have a kind of a sense of entitlement that that they ha and their search.
[00:24:44] So they. They bring their personal, needs and things that they need into their searches. And and there's nothing wrong with that. Having demands on employers and so forth and asking questions about the things that you need. But you typically want to do that later so when you [00:25:00] ask about salaries and benefits and time off.
[00:25:03] And working remotely and so forth in initial interviews law firms are going to just basically, shut you down and not invite you back. The reason is because they have people that aren't doing that and law firms want to control you. That's just their businesses.
[00:25:16] And and if you don't like it, then there's no reason to work for them, but that's just pretty much how it works. So they'll let the fear entitlements that you have for your position. The less likely you are to get hired. Law firms want to see you as a soldier and someone who's going to carry out instructions and not letting their ego interfere.
[00:25:32] Now there's nothing to say that you can't bring these things up after you receive an offer. But sometimes even people bring it up after they receive an offer and law firms react in a negative way. Most large law firms do not. Some small law firms do, I've seen people have offers withdrawn for trying to negotiate salaries and all sorts of stuff.
[00:25:48] So it's just, it's not always the best thing, but if you don't have entitlement issues your total is going to be far better in your search than if you have them just bring them up later. You want to come in and the very best [00:26:00] position person for the job, not right when you start. The other thing is if you're using a recruiter in your search that the quality of the recruiter use makes a big difference.
[00:26:08]You're going to be far more likely to rise to the top if you're using a good recruiter, as opposed to a poor average a good recruiter is has the ability to expose you to the correct firms and openings. But also, help position you in a way that maximizes things, the minimize those things.
[00:26:21] So dropping to the back of the bucket it's just depends on the quality of the person that you use and the age, gender. It's like that with anything, it's quality, the doctor used, you can have something to do with your health. And there's just a lot of differences in the skills of different critters and people in the market and what happens in your career.
[00:26:36]I believe it's important. And I remember my girlfriend said once That she was she was a nine and on her, she was at Harvard and major in psychology. And and then the last she was at a lecture that was the last lecture of a psychology professors career at the end of the year.
[00:26:53] And he was named to retire and he said, the only thing I want you guys to remember that come into this is that the quality of [00:27:00] therapists you use is often one of the most important decisions you'll make in your life because if the person isn't good they can really screw you up and do a lot of harm and if they are good they can have help you and make you into a really good person or help you become.
[00:27:12]Others of us can really make a difference with how things happen and the ideas that people gave you commit config difference. And I like to think that I'm good at what I'm doing, teaching you this stuff, but some people in this business do not necessarily understand how it works and could steer you in horrible paths because they don't have a lot of options for you.
[00:27:33]And or they have, interest, they could defeat yourself confidence, all sorts of names. So if you just need to like anything, I'm not saying it's just a curtain, but you need to be careful who you trust your mind with. Do you trust your career with who you trust your body with or the doctor?
[00:27:51]All that sort of thing, who you trust your your emotions, where that you should always be careful because you want to use the best people that you can. The other [00:28:00] thing is if you were a summer associate in a large law firm and a major law firm, and you want to work in another law firm, that's a big law firm, a very prestigious law firm.
[00:28:09]You're typically going to be much better off and able to rise to the top if you were, if you did this. And if you didn't if you've been a summer associate at a major law firm, it shows that you typically wanted to work as a law firm as a summer associates, you are committed to working in a law firm and you're, we're good enough law student to get a position in a major law firm is that summer associate.
[00:28:27] And that's very important to attorneys. That are two law firms. So I also recommend that in addition the quality of law firm, you were in as a summer associate. Reflects your drive, your personality your grades and so forth. And so it will if you didn't do that for many large law firms, that can be a deal breaker.
[00:28:43]That's something to remember. And most large law firms are always going to prefer hiring people who were summer associates in large law firms. And it's just the perception is if you weren't a summer associate, you may not have been marketable. Didn't want to do it. And there may be something wrong with you.
[00:28:57] And, frankly, I because the [00:29:00] positions pay so much compared to other things and it can help you with your education expenses and so forth law firms often, wonder why people don't do it if you didn't do it right. And they just hire people that want to be in the same environments.
[00:29:12]So they do discriminate against attorneys even at later years when they see they weren't a Somerset. So they think that maybe the person didn't want to do it. And but and so it's not certainly gonna hurt you forever. And it won't prevent you even from getting a job if you didn't get a summer associate for example, this year.
[00:29:28]And and then you want to work in a major law firm, you can still get a job in your third year. I see it all the time or later on. It just makes it more difficult than if you weren't cause law firms think maybe don't want to do it. And and the other thing is that it just shows that if you did get an offer, for example, that you can fit in with those environments and give them what they're expecting.
[00:29:47]The other thing is to. It's much easier to get, to to get a position in a large law firm or any law firm, if you're seeking a full-time position, as opposed to a part-time or flex time position. Many people I work with [00:30:00] want reduced hours or they want to they'll work three or four days a week or and that sort of thing.
[00:30:05] And it's that is often a deal breaker. I see people trying to get that all the time. You just need to look at it. From the alarms point of view a law firm wants to hire people that are going to work hard and have to rely on or worry about not contributing or being there when when certain projects are up against deadlines and that sort of thing.
[00:30:23]So that's just something to think about. You certainly can get hired if you're a working mother and everything. It's not impossible. Can people of course do it. And you can get hired if you need reverse towers. It just makes it more difficult. It's a little bit of a if the law firm has a lot of work, it's a little bit of a Nick against you sometimes.
[00:30:41]And it's not to say that you can't do it. Of course. I placed women doing that all the time. And and I don't know that I've been doing it every month recently, but I certainly had a period where I was doing it quite often every month. And you, you just have fewer opportunities if you're trying to work a flexitime job because law firms are, looking for the easiest people to hire and [00:31:00] and with, without any thing against them.
[00:31:02]My advice is often if you're trying to do that is to not mention at the interview stage. And then when you get an offer, bring it up. And in most cases law firms to not make an issue out of it, if you bring it up after you're, you've received an offer. Yeah.
[00:31:15] And now but many times some law firms to have an issue and they want FaceTime. And you're often going to be much better off if you are not making an issue out of it when you're on your game as well.
[00:31:25] And then and then bring it up later because it's going to something that people will compare you against. And you don't want, you want to have as many positive points against you as possible for you. The other thing I, and I brought this up a little bit earlier, but if you are in a niche practice area, it's much easier to get higher than if you're in a major one.
[00:31:42]Litigators are just there's so many litigators out there. And honestly, there's litigators all over. I think probably in every street I've ever lived on there was a litigator and this is, since I've been a small child the litigators everywhere.
[00:31:54]And the more niche your practice area is typically the fewer applications there are going to be because the [00:32:00] law firm there's just not a lot of people in each practice areas. And so if you have specialized skills you're always going to be much better off than if you don't and and and many times, because there's so few attorneys with specialized skills you often don't even need the best educational qualifications or come from the best schools to get hired.
[00:32:15]That's how important how important those skills are. I mean having specialized skills and you may not even need one to five years of experience and to do that as well. The, there's just not a lot of people with specialized skills. And so if you're specialized in a smaller market and law firm has an opening it can make it even easier many times.
[00:32:32] So you're going to be much better off many times if you have most of the time, if you have a niche new skills and there's an opening certain market and this is something that I bring up just so people understand it, but. If you go to work as a contract attorney, and then you're trying to get a position as a full-time attorney it can make it much more difficult.
[00:32:50]It just it, it communicates to law firms that maybe you couldn't find a position in a law firm or you're interested in something not permanent that you are willing to do [00:33:00] less sophisticated work. You're willing to work more cheaply than full-time attorneys. And and I don't think there's anything wrong with being a contract attorney.
[00:33:06] I know some contract attorneys that did so well doing it. They retired in their forties, actually early forties. So you can do very well being a contract attorney. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with that as a career, but at the same time, if you're looking for a permanent job, that kind of stuff can prevent you from buying at the top of the bucket.
[00:33:22] And so just realize that's going to penalize you for many times from getting a position with most law firms on a full-time basis. The other thing is if you're trying to get a position in a large law firm you're going to be much better off coming from another large law firm than if you're coming from a small law firm and large law firms almost always want to hire people coming from other large law firms.
[00:33:43] And typically the reason for that is the quality of the work. The training, the expectations they send, tend to be. The assumption large law firms has had attorneys coming from other law firms are just going to have done a lot of work for clients with the same sort of expectations. Have the ability to think through complex [00:34:00] problems in the same matter by ma pager, high paying clients do work for the same caliber and so forth.
[00:34:04] And you're going to be much better off trying to get a job in a large law firm if you're coming from that kind of environment. The other thing that I see a lot of attorneys do that I just want to bring up as well is when you're interviewing. No, you need to be very positive about all of your previous employers and not negative.
[00:34:19]Sometimes. Yeah. You may have had a very bad experience at your prior employer. And and that's just most attorneys, at some point, we're going to have a very bad employment experience. And if you go into law firms and interviews after having problems with previous employers and then talk about them you'll typically not get hired.
[00:34:34] It's just the way it goes. Everyone has had issues with their previous employers, but when you bring it up it can signal to a prospective law firm that the odds are you're going to do it with them one day. And that you actually may there may be something wrong with your performance and inability to get along with others and so forth.
[00:34:50]If you say negative things about your previous employer, you're tempted, they are going to fall to the bottom of the bucket. The other thing is that I hate to bring up this. Especially in this day and age, but [00:35:00] attorneys are almost expected. If they're working in a law firm to be neutral about themselves and social issues.
[00:35:06] And this is when you're representing clients and it's not to say that all attorneys are like this, but many attorneys are very interested and outspoken about various social issues. It could be related to, religion or politics, race, or sexuality. Any, anything that doesn't really matter.
[00:35:23]Law firms do like diversity but at the same time, they're conservative. And if they're outspoken they fear that's can draw negative attention to them or that kind of energy you put into whatever the social issues are, could turn against them. And you could become a detractor for them, and they are interested in maintaining low profiles and and looking just very straightforward for institutions that are doing work for people and letting the clients being in the spotlight, but not them.
[00:35:51] And so law firms will most often avoid people that have strong opinions. I'm not saying that's fair. I'm not saying that they all do that. But. I'm [00:36:00] saying that it can draw negative attention to you. As a young attorney, especially they want people that are pretty much going to sit at their desk and commit to that.
[00:36:08] And and that's that and certainly lawyer's role in society and advancing social issues. And it's ironic that this requirement is something that can hurt you from getting a job in a large law firm. But the law firms typically don't want attention on them. They wanna I don't want to bring negative attention to them.
[00:36:25] So just appearing a little bit neutral and not extremely real issues in my mind, Had attorneys that are like, that are hired much more frequently than attorneys that that don't appear neutral, what that sort of stuff. Those attorneys tend to have a difficult time often getting hired.
[00:36:43]And the other thing too, is that moving firms quite a bit is another negative thing. If you move do not move firms that often it's much easier to get hired. So if you join a firm out of law school and you've been there three or four years, and you want to move, you're going to have a much better reception if it's you're coming from your [00:37:00] first firm, then your third or fourth firm, and you've been out of school, you've been moving every year.
[00:37:05]Law firms want to believe that the people that work for them are going to stick around and and and it takes time to get people up to speed on client files. It takes time for attorneys to to get situated into, but if you change jobs frequently, it's really going to indicate to future law firms that you have, issues getting along with people that you might not practice in law and are trying to see if there's an environment that could work better for you that you might not, you could work but you might be fickle and not able to settle down and those sorts of things.
[00:37:34]And so the law firm will just assume that there's problems with you and they will look negatively at you and law firms, of course miss this stuff all the time. It's very rare that large institutional law firms that have hiring standards and know what they're doing will ever hire someone that's been at too many firms.
[00:37:50] They just they don't, or a lot of firms with books on federal. They just they've had too many bad experiences with that. That's something else to think about. The other thing is if you're employed versus unemployed that's [00:38:00] another thing that will hurt you. So if you're unemployed, it's going to make it much more difficult to get a job.
[00:38:04]The message to employers who've run employed is that you might've been fired or asked to leave your last job, or you're not that concerned with working and you may have no issues being an unemployed for the most part, once you start practicing law, most law firms. And I, again, I don't know that this is a fair rule, but this is just how the legal profession works.
[00:38:21] They expect you to work for the rest of your career, practicing law. It's just how it works. And the other thing is that, a law firm thinks you're going to be much better off looking for a position when you're coming. When you don't need a job when versus when you need a job, if you need a job the law firm is think that maybe, that they offer more than know than you necessarily, that they, they have a, they're a better deal than you are.
[00:38:42]So how people who need jobs always have a much more difficult time getting higher. And and so law firms like it when you're more of a passive job seeker, right? So when you're employed versus unemployed the other thing is just having significant business. That's always going to help you law firms, if you have a major business that could [00:39:00] be a two to $3 million in business, in a big market, maybe even more than that smaller markets less if you have business, it's always gonna make you a much more employable.
[00:39:09]And it really depends on kind of the size. Okay. The practice is that when an attorney starts having business notice and is interested in them if it's enough business, And your billing rates are compatible with the law firms. Then you're going to be looked at quite seriously. It's important.
[00:39:26] And it's something that if you are interested in remaining the legal profession and law firms, that you need to start thinking about it very early in your career because if you do it's gonna make you rise to the top of the bucket. Another thing that helps us, the quality of the law school you went to, it's certainly not the most important thing.
[00:39:44]But it definitely helps getting a job as a summer associate and it becomes less important over time, but it does it does show your kind of early achievement level. It shows, to some extent how well you test and how dedicated you are when you were in college.
[00:39:59]And I've [00:40:00] seen lots of law firms reject very highly qualified candidates coming from major law firms. I just, because they may not have liked the school, the person attended and major law firms do like to show their clients that the camp, the people that are doing the work on their behalf went to top law schools and so forth that makes them look good.
[00:40:17] And most large law firms are composed of attorneys went to the best law schools and they want to hire more people like that. That, that can help. The other thing that helps I think in is I personally believe is more important many times in the quality of the law school, the person who went to is how well they didn't law school.
[00:40:33]I'd love, when someone is at the very top of their class, even if it's not at a great law school, I think it shows a lot of aptitude. I think it shows a lot of drive and and many law firms even have Greg cutoffs for partners with huge books and will only hire people with certain books of business.
[00:40:48] So law firms can take grades very seriously and they want to hire people that have done well, wherever they go. And then it helps the firm's reputation in the eyes of other attorneys. And I've certainly seen partners, not [00:41:00] good jobs because of their grades.
[00:41:01]Even at the partner level grades are a big deal and can help you. But honestly, they're only there's only a small handful of firms where it makes that much of a difference. And it's not something that you need to think about your kind of your entire career, but it's and I would say there's probably less than 20 firms where it becomes a big deal.
[00:41:19]When you're out of school a long time, but it can help you No. The other thing I think is important is looking at several markets. So if you're looking at several markets, you're typically going to be have a major advantage in your search when I'm working with people.
[00:41:31] I always try to get them to look at more than just the market that they're at. I try to get them to look at lots and lots of different legal markets because you just never know who's going to buy. It's like fishing. You have to, look at, where the most opportunities are likely to be.
[00:41:45] And sometimes, you're going to be much more marketable and maybe a large market than a smaller market or smaller market than a larger market. And if you look at 10 markets, you may increase your odds of getting a position by 10 or more times. And not looking at multiple markets, especially when you're niche, practice areas and [00:42:00] smart many patent attorneys I work with will look at tons of markets.
[00:42:03] So same thing goes with a lot of people and pockets like tax and other niche practice areas, because there may not be. A lot of opportunities in their existing market. So if they look at other markets, then it helps them. And I have interviews that happen daily of attorneys that may not have been gotten interest or positions in major law firms that they'd only looked at one market.
[00:42:23]But they get someone, they look at multiple markets. So I think this is one of the smartest things you can do because you're putting yourself at the top of the bar where you may not be in one market. So better off looking at milk multiples. Okay. And preferably markets where you may have some sort of connection, but not always.
[00:42:41]You don't always need a connection. And the other thing is just having been admitted to the bar. There's certain jurisdictions, California, New York, where if you have the bar it's much easier, but most markets you don't necessarily you can wave in fairly easily.
[00:42:52]Florida is another one where you typically need the bar, but but other than that, if you have, the bar does show, you have an interest in there and the market, but it's [00:43:00] typically not that difficult to, wave into the bar and most markets. The other thing is that, if you're moving to a market, we have family or connections you're much more likely to get hired than if you don't.
[00:43:09]If a candidate we're working with has a connection to a market, then we always bring that up. A law firm will believe in you, you're much more likely to stay there. If you have a family there or a reason to be there, then if you don't if you don't have a family or any connections there, the law firm realizes you can just get up and leave if you don't like it or settle down.
[00:43:27]Always trying to have significant ties to an area will make it look like you're gonna stay there. And then the other thing is if you're if you look like us, Specialist as opposed to doing multiple things. So a lot of times I'm one of the MIS that also helps you attorneys will put a bunch of things on their resume.
[00:43:43] They'll note that they do this type of law and this type of law. And they think that helps them. Most law firms work for companies and if you're not doing consumer facing work and you're working for companies, most companies will only pay law firms that have specialists in them. So saying you do [00:44:00] five or six different types of work.
[00:44:01]Is going to make the law firms a little bit nervous about bringing you in because they pay for people with specialized skills, even in some smaller markets. Now that doesn't mean that, a corporate attorney in a smaller market, can't do, M and a and general corporate work and maybe some other types of corporate work, but it does mean that they shouldn't put down that they also do litigation and tax or real estate on the resume that could actually hurt them.
[00:44:24]Just being careful about not having too much going on in your resume is always a good idea. You need to look like you're devoted to something and you understand what you're doing and and it's just, it's very important. And just a few more of these, and then we will take questions.
[00:44:37]The other thing is that is important is that if you're, if you're attractive, well-spoken well, groomed, well dressed and so forth, confident you're much more likely to get a job. But and I don't like saying this stuff. It doesn't make me comfortable because it's just not a nice thing to say.
[00:44:51]But tall, attractive out athletic men are often more likely to be hired than those that aren't that way. Same thing with women and same thing with people that dress up and look [00:45:00] confident and people that are fit compared to people that look out of shape that's just how it works.
[00:45:04] And it's something that I noticed again and again, and so it makes a difference and so the more put together.
[00:45:11] The better off you'll be now, you can make up for that with not having all those things by being extremely competent or confident, or by being extremely having a really good personality or having an incredible qualifications, but, law firms believe that your appearance or your confidence reflects on them.
[00:45:27] And so I've just seen law firms hire people with certain types of characteristics again, and again, if I, when I hear about someone getting hired with, and I see their resume and I actually have unqualified there and I hear about them getting hired in a major firm many times it often is because the person just presents very well and comes across with a lot of confidence and or whatever.
[00:45:44]It's just law firms want to hire people that have certain personality characteristics. So just realizing that, taking care of yourself and being it's very looking good and being confident, so forth, we'll help you. And the other thing is diversity is very helpful.
[00:45:58]Law firms are [00:46:00] more and more interested in diversity. Law firms view diversity as a great plus traditionally and there hasn't been a lot of diversity in the legal profession and law firms are changing that and they're becoming more diverse.
[00:46:10]Where, their clients are diverse, but then they're not. And so that makes them not look as good. And that they really do take diversity seriously. And and if you're diverse, that is something that, can definitely help you now I don't necessarily recommend making an issue of diversity, meaning you don't wanna, mention a 10 times on your resume.
[00:46:29]But law firms, love it when they can bring in people that are diverse because it helps them with client retention. It makes the work a better atmosphere for different types of people. Ever more people feel comfortable, they get diversity of opinion. There's different ways of looking at problems.
[00:46:44] There's so many advantages of diversity, but you typically I want to make an issue out of it. You still want to appear that you're there because of the work, not because of diversity. So that will make you definitely rise to the top of the bucket. The other thing is the, this is one of the final things is that if you look like someone who really [00:47:00] wants to work in a law firm compared to someone who might leave and go and house or stop practicing law that also helps you quite a bit.
[00:47:05]Many attorneys aren't interested in working in law firms in the long-term, they may want to go and be, No, I work in the us attorney's office, or they may want to go and most want to go in house and law firms can pick up at that, the interview stage. They can tell your level of enthusiasm and the things you're doing.
[00:47:21]And they want to hire people that are ambitious and are going to put everything into it. And and then they want to be able to mentor people like that. And and they want to feel like they have some sense of control in that, you're going to really try.
[00:47:32] And there's just a lot of people that are coasting and and then that arm and and so law firms can typically tell if you're going to stick around in a law firm. Some of the signals they pick up on, are you being the primary breadwinner? If you've come out of a lower to middle-class background and really talk about wanting to be a partner, if you're committed.
[00:47:50]So you're doing a lot of speaking, writing and other activities related to the practice of law and your practice area. And you tell the law firm sort of what you want to do as a career, and you're gonna do whatever it takes. And [00:48:00] personality suggests that this is something you're sitting doing.
[00:48:02] You'd bring bringing in clients. You're just very enthusiastic. And so these are just some of the things that law firms will pick up on, and it can make a major difference in whether a law firm will take an interest in you. And in contrast if you're not understood, you're gonna come across the opposite way.
[00:48:16]Farm is important. So these are really the 30 factors and I realize it's quite a few but these are the things that that I the most important ones that I see law firms evaluating people on are a kind of an ongoing basis. So I'm going to take a quick break just for one or two minutes.
[00:48:30] And then when I come back I'll take questions and I will take questions about anything you have related to your career. And I certainly, or this presentation, thanks.
[00:48:39]For this year too.
[00:48:40] Or this?
[00:48:41]Yeah, just out there. Have this
[00:48:45] Okay. Get started with questions. Give me one second.
[00:48:49]That's okay. For word documents. I can return the questions.
[00:48:52] Good question. I'll let me just share my screen. Sorry about that.
[00:48:55]that's the question is this is a good one. Is working in a smaller firm from a top law school [00:49:00] is something that puts you at the bottom of the bucket and the major firm and large law firm to a major market. It feels so much set in stone. What are the ways to move from a small firm to a large firm, especially if you're not at a large firm, actually didn't have someone, a large firm actually.
[00:49:13] No it's actually the opposite. If you're working at a smaller firm and you went to a top law school and you're not in a major market that's actually a good thing because what happens is a lot of times associates and we'll go to work in the biggest firms right out of law school.
[00:49:28] And and they'll get they'll get arrogant. They'll take it for granted. They won't work as hard. They'll. And so forth. And so LA law firms always want to bring in people that have a lot of energy and are very excited about working in the firm. And so it's actually a good thing.
[00:49:43] So if you're, if you started in a if you're in a smaller firm and you went to a top law school and you want to go to a major market, people do that all the time. And and honestly, if you're in the right practice here, you don't even need to have gone to a top law school. But you certainly can move into a major